Some could question whether or not or not Lionel Messi really deserved to win his latest Ballon d’Or prize ahead of various worthy candidates, nonetheless the Argentinian has been rewarded for persevering with to be so good for thus prolonged.
The most turbulent 12 months of Messi’s glittering career, via which he was pressured to tearfully bid farewell to Barcelona, ends with him –- on the age of 34 — claiming a record-extending seventh Ballon d’Or for the simplest participant on the earth.
In Germany they thought it wanted to be Robert Lewandowski’s 12 months after he missed out 12 months up to now when the 2020 model was scrapped due to the pandemic.
Karim Benzema might have had a great deal of help in Spain for his distinctive performances with Real Madrid, and Jorginho may stake a declare following a 12 months via which he acquired the Champions League with Chelsea along with Euro 2020 with Italy.
Yet it is the enduring brilliance of Messi -– who acquired the ultimate award in 2019 — which stays inside the minds of the jurors referring to voting.
Having joined Paris Saint-Germain in August, he is the first male participant to win the award whereas with a French membership since Jean-Pierre Papin of Marseille in 1991, although it was his achievements with Barcelona and with Argentina that counted in course of him efficiently retaining his crown.
Messi tried unsuccessfully to energy his departure from Barcelona in August 2020 nonetheless he confirmed no indicators of rancour as he stayed placed on the Camp Nou and ended remaining season with 38 goals in 48 video video games for his boyhood membership.
– International success ultimately –
These are the form of distinctive figures that he has made so mundane over the course of his career –- definitely he had actually scored additional goals than that in 10 of his earlier 11 seasons.
Messi was the best scorer in La Liga for the fifth consecutive 12 months with 30 goals and acquired the Copa del Rey, scoring twice inside the closing as Barcelona beat Athletic Bilbao 4-0.
This will always be remembered as a result of the 12 months his prolonged affiliation with the Catalan giants acquired right here to an end, after 672 goals in 778 appearances, a doc intention tally for one membership.
However, 2021 was moreover the 12 months he lastly acquired a big worldwide title, captaining Argentina to victory inside the Copa America with a 1-0 win in opposition to Brazil inside the closing on the Maracana.
He scored 4 goals inside the match as Argentina acquired the South American championship for the first time since 1993.
“I consider I acquired this trophy as a result of what we did on the Copa America so I dedicate this to my teammates,” he talked about after being handed his latest Ballon d’Or on the Chatelet Theatre in central Paris.
– Unfinished enterprise –
However the shame was that hardly any followers had been inside the stadium to witness Argentina’s Copa America success ensuing from coronavirus restrictions, solely together with to the sense that, no matter all he has achieved, Messi nonetheless has unfinished enterprise.
Not least at PSG, the place he has so far carried out merely 11 video video games since arriving in August, and scored merely 4 goals.
Messi did current three assists for the Parisians in a Ligue 1 match on Sunday nonetheless it stays to be seen how motivated the Argentinian is by the French league. He has completely different priorities.
“My dream is to win another Champions League,” he talked about at his unveiling in August, with the ultimate of his 4 European Cups coming in 2015.
Then there’s the really big one: the World Cup in Qatar shall be underway this time subsequent 12 months and Messi shall be 35 by then.
That will definitely be his remaining chance to win the perfect trophy of all, and likewise you consider he would swap his seven Ballons d’Or to get his fingers on it.